So it’s time for that annual check-up at your doctor’s office. You’re not all that thrilled about the ordeal but you go. You want to be sure that you are on the right track with your health.
The day arrives and you find yourself in the waiting room. After giving the receptionist all the pertinent information you take a seat. While waiting you find yourself flipping through the outdated magazines. And then your name is called.
Before going into the examination room you stop by the scale for the nurse to weigh you. You just know their scale is wrong because there’s a 10 pound difference between this scale and your 20 year old scale at home.
After that you are then given a little cup for you to urinate in. That is not always an easy feat to accomplish, especially if you just emptied your bladder before leaving your house. Your nurse tells you to meet her in the examination room when you’re finished.
When you get there you are told to sit on the narrow bed that has a long strip of white paper covering it. A few questions are asked and then your blood pressure is taken.
And then it happens!!
You are handed that dreaded hospital gown. You are instructed to disrobe and put the gown on as the nurse exits. That’s when I sometimes lose it. I’ve often wondered what the purpose of this gown is. Besides being thin and flimsy they don’t offer the best coverage. You don’t know how to put them on half the time. Are you supposed to put the opening in the front or vice versa? The parts that are not thoroughly covered you quickly place a blanket over so as not to be exposed.
Then the doctor comes in along with the nurse. The stethoscope is usually the first instrument he uses while asking questions. He tries to be discrete in the handling of the gown after examining the different areas of your body. You try to distract yourself from the matter at hand. Before you know it, the examination is over. You wait for him to leave and hurry to put your clothes back on.
A new gown on the block
In order to make your visit to the doctor’s office a little more “enjoyable” the Cleveland Clinic is doing something about those hideous gowns. They have teamed up with well-known fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg. She has developed a unisex gown that offers full coverage. And the opening can be worn on either the front or back. What a novel idea! No more fumbling about and wondering the proper way to wear the gown.
Executive liaison Jeanne Ryan says, “We believe that providing our patients with a comfortable, stylish hospital gown that helps to improve dignity will improve the overall hospital experience”.
I’m glad for this innovative idea and hope that doctors’ offices and hospitals will embrace the idea too.
AARP Bulletin, November 2010, Page 10